A Few Questions to Ask Creationists/ID proponents

A work in progress…

Why do many different dating methods agree, pointing to an old earth and life on earth for a long time? For example: relative dating, radioactive dating, incremental dating such as using tree rings and ice cores, etc. Dating methods are based on distinct fields (archaeology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, physics), yet they all seem to arrive at similar dates.

Why does the distribution of fossils appear to be chronological? For instance, why are fossils of flowering plants only found in higher levels of the fossil record?

How do you explain the present distribution of certain animals? For example, marsupials (like the kangaroo) are found in Australia, but marsupials are absent from Africa and the only marsupials in North and South America are oppossums. Monotremes (egg-laying mammals) are only found in Australia. Furthermore, Australia has very few placental mammals. Yet Australia occupies the same latitude as South America and Africa.

How do you explain genetic differences between species? Why do humans and chimpanzees have such similarity in their genomes yet humans have many more differences between themselves and, say, elephants?

Do you have any evidence that species cannot evolve beyond “kinds” ? And please, define “kinds”.

Some of these are the same questions Charles Darwin faced with the observations he made. Discoveries from other fields since Darwin, fields he perhaps never even dreamed of, seem to have confirmed his ideas. What other explanation could there be for these observations from these diverse fields which all seem to confirm one another?

Advertisements

31 Responses to “A Few Questions to Ask Creationists/ID proponents”

  1. vitaminbook Says:

    I’ll take a stab at anticipating the replies you might get on this one:

    It’s a coincidence/they’re wrong/it’s a conspiracy. Tree rings and ice cores don’t exist.

    It’s a conspiracy. Chronological fossil records don’t exist.

    It’s a conspiracy. God put all of the animals there. Why? Mysterious ways, people!

    It’s a conspiracy. Genetic similarities don’t exist. (Alternatively, God did it for his own, ever-mysterious reasons).

    Phew. There you have it – I’ve just totally demolished evolution, leaving Creationism as the clear victor! Hurrah!

  2. intelligentscience Says:

    The thing you don’t realize about dating techniques is that they are built upon unscientific, unprovable assumptions. Radiometric dating is the measurement of the decay of the parent isotope my measuring the amount of the daughter isotope in the rock. Correct? To be able to get a date out of a rock in this way you must assume three things…
    1. The rate of decay of the parent isotope has NEVER changed
    2. The starting amount of the parent isotope (when the rock formed) is ALWAYS the same
    3. There must be NO daughter element in the rock when it hardens (the dating process would be contaminated

    These are things you can’t falsify or test, you must assume them

    Distribution of mammals: Is either evidence for evolution or evidence that God put them there. We’ll never know.

    “How do you explain genetic differences between species? Why do humans and chimpanzees have such similarity in their genomes yet humans have many more differences between themselves and, say, elephants?”

    Because God created them different.

    “Do you have any evidence that species cannot evolve beyond “kinds” ? And please, define “kinds”.”

    I defined “kinds” for you on my blog. Do you have any evidence that they can? What I mean is, all you are looking at are fossils that are similar. Similar fossils are only evidence of similarity, not evidence of common ancestry. If you could show me a testable, observable, falsifiable way to show one kind evolving to another I’d like to hear it. In short, I do have evidence that species cannot evolve beyond kinds, it’s never been observed.

  3. Even if you argue there is no proof of uniformity in radioactive decay, that still doesn’t answer the question. Why do many completely different dating techniques give similar answers to the age of objects and the age of the earth?

    “Because God created them different.”

    Why would God create a human and chimpanzee more similarly than a human and an elephant?

    “I defined “kinds” for you on my blog.”

    I’m sorry, but there doesn’t appear to be a link from your username above to your blog, so I’m not sure where your blog is.

    “Do you have any evidence that they can? What I mean is, all you are looking at are fossils that are similar. Similar fossils are only evidence of similarity, not evidence of common ancestry.”

    Evolutionary biologists do not JUST look at fossils. Fossils are merely one evidence that points toward evolution. They also take into account evidence from genetics, from comparative anatomy, from geographical distribution, from biochemistry, by studying antibiotic and pesticide resistance, etc.

    Why do fossils seem to change over time in the strata of rocks? When you look at a line-up of hominid skull fossils, what explanation do you have for why they are all different from one another?

    It is my opinion that there is, at the very least, an appearance of evolution in the history of the earth. One must then ask, why is this? Why do all these different fields of science seem to come to the same conclusion about the history of the earth? If God simply put fossils there, or allowed to be there, in such a manner, then why? That seems rather deceptive to me, if the answer isn’t, in fact, evolution.

    As far as evidence for evolution, I mentioned several different fields of science that supply much evidence for it above. Plus there are actual observed events of speciation (not just in the fossil record, but actually OBSERVED).

  4. vitaminbook Says:

    Why do fossils seem to change over time in the strata of rocks? When you look at a line-up of hominid skull fossils, what explanation do you have for why they are all different from one another?

    I’ve actually fielded this one before. The last time it came up, someone tried to tell me that God had simply created different sets of different species that were all slightly different from each other – in chronological order. (The example we were using was cetacean evolution, where there’s a fossil record of the blowhole moving to different points on the skull gradually over time).

    The thing you don’t realize about dating techniques is that they are built upon unscientific, unprovable assumptions. Radiometric dating is the measurement of the decay of the parent isotope my measuring the amount of the daughter isotope in the rock. Correct? To be able to get a date out of a rock in this way you must assume three things…
    1. The rate of decay of the parent isotope has NEVER changed
    2. The starting amount of the parent isotope (when the rock formed) is ALWAYS the same
    3. There must be NO daughter element in the rock when it hardens (the dating process would be contaminated

    Yes, and there are instances where any or all of these things can mess up a dating attempt. Scientists are fully aware that dating cannot be absolutely exact.

    However, there exists a truly enormous body of evidence, built up from many different dating methods, that points to this stuff being accurate. If there was just one dating method involved, obviously you’d have to question whether or not it works, but when many different dating methods all agree…well, it becomes difficult to argue that they could all be completely off base.

  5. “The last time it came up, someone tried to tell me that God had simply created different sets of different species that were all slightly different from each other – in chronological order. (The example we were using was cetacean evolution, where there’s a fossil record of the blowhole moving to different points on the skull gradually over time). ”

    If God created in such a manner, that would seem to imply that God couldn’t get it right the first time. “Hmm, that blowhole really doesn’t work very well there…let’s try something a little different now.”

    Even if God felt it worked perfectly well where it was before, why did He keep creating? Why does the earth appear to show these creations over billions of years? It all seems a little deceptive for a God who hates lies.

    Also, consider the eye–a feature some people consider to be “irreducibly complex” and therefore could not have evolved. Yet the eye has defects that surely no intelligent designer would ever include–like light receptors in the back of the eye behind blood vessels that obstruct the view.

    It seems a little silly and insulting, in my opinion, to attribute such work to God, who is supposed to be perfect and omnipotent.

  6. vitaminbook Says:

    Let’s not forget that human eyes, while far from the keenest in the animal kingdom, are still far better than many others out there. It’s strange that God had to have trade-offs among the senses for different animals. Just look at our sense of smell – it’s pathetic.

    And let’s not forget this species of immortal jellyfish: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Turritopsis_nutricula

    God really dealt those guys a favourable hand, didn’t he?

  7. intelligentscience Says:

    “Why do many completely different dating techniques give similar answers to the age of objects and the age of the earth?”

    Because all radiometric dating techniques are based on the same assumptions. If you’re talking about non-radiometric dating techniques, can you be more specific?

    “Why would God create a human and chimpanzee more similarly than a human and an elephant?”

    Because they’re more similar. But the “why” doesn’t matter, only the “how”. If you attempted to spend time reasoning out “why” God did certain things, you’d drive yourself insane in the pointless endeavor. Accept of course, when He tells us the “why”.

    “I’m sorry, but there doesn’t appear to be a link from your username above to your blog, so I’m not sure where your blog is.”

    Dang, I assumed that it did. I’m new here, how would I attach the link to my name?

    “They also take into account evidence from genetics, from comparative anatomy, from geographical distribution, from biochemistry, by studying antibiotic and pesticide resistance, etc.”

    Let’s take each. Genetics: again, just more similarity.
    Comparative anatomy: same thing as studying the similarity of the fossils.
    Geographical distribution: God put them there.
    Biochemistry: I’m not sure what you mean here.
    Antibiotic resistance: Has nothing to do with common ancestry, this is merely adaptation, not common ancestry.

    “Why do fossils seem to change over time in the strata of rocks?”

    Finding two different species in the strata of the geologic column is just that, finding two different species. You must assume that they changed over time.

    “When you look at a line-up of hominid skull fossils, what explanation do you have for why they are all different from one another?”

    Uh oh, now you’re getting into slippery water. Many anthros disagree that many “hominid” finds are actually that. Many “hominid” finds are fragments of the skull and the rest of the features are then drawn in. If you’d like to be more specific about which hominid finds you mean, that’s be great.

    “One must then ask, why is this? Why do all these different fields of science seem to come to the same conclusion about the history of the earth? If God simply put fossils there, or allowed to be there, in such a manner, then why? That seems rather deceptive to me, if the answer isn’t, in fact, evolution.”

    But dont’ you see, you are starting with the assumption that evolution is true. I’m not sure what you mean by “different fields” but I promise you they are all tied together with the same basic assumptions. You are assuming that God putting fossils there “seems” like evolution, when it actually, equally, could seem like He created them as is. It only seems like God is being deceptive because you are looking at fossils through evolutionary goggles, reading similarity to mean common ancestry.

    “Plus there are actual observed events of speciation (not just in the fossil record, but actually OBSERVED).”

    No one said anything about “speciation”, only kinds. Breeding a different type of fruit fly does not evolution make. It’s still a fruit fly. But evolution requires a change in kinds and that has NEVER been observed.

    Btw: my blog is intelligentscience.org

  8. intelligentscience Says:

    Vitaminbook

    “Yes, and there are instances where any or all of these things can mess up a dating attempt. Scientists are fully aware that dating cannot be absolutely exact.”

    This is actually not true. You are attempting to downplay the importance of the assumptions. If these assumptions are true, which you just admitted they are, then radiometric dating is nothing more than a guess, and not even an educated one. At either point, 1, 2, or 3, radiometric dating can be affected so greatly as to be useless, a pointless scientific endeavor because of the sweeping assumptions they must make.

    My point is that, in order to get the date of a rock at all, the assumptions must be followed EXACTLY. Those assumptions are NOT taken into account during the %error as you are suggesting.

    “However, there exists a truly enormous body of evidence, built up from many different dating methods, that points to this stuff being accurate. If there was just one dating method involved, obviously you’d have to question whether or not it works, but when many different dating methods all agree…well, it becomes difficult to argue that they could all be completely off base.”

    All the radiometric dating methods are under these same assumptions. They’re all completely off base because they are all under the same assumptions.

  9. vitaminbook Says:

    My point is that, in order to get the date of a rock at all, the assumptions must be followed EXACTLY. Those assumptions are NOT taken into account during the %error as you are suggesting.

    Could you provide some evidence for that?

  10. vitaminbook Says:

    Apologies again for the double posting, but…

    Geographical distribution: God put them there.

    Could you provide evidence that this statement is true?

  11. “Because all radiometric dating techniques are based on the same assumptions. If you’re talking about non-radiometric dating techniques, can you be more specific?”

    I’ve already mentioned several. Recall in the original post:
    “For example: relative dating, radioactive dating, incremental dating such as using tree rings and ice cores, etc. Dating methods are based on distinct fields (archaeology, astronomy, biology, chemistry, geology, physics), yet they all seem to arrive at similar dates.”

    Radiometric dating is another term for radioactive dating. There are many other kinds of dating, however, including the ones mentioned above. They all seem to agree on the age of objects and the age of the earth. Not all dating is radiometric.

    “Because they’re more similar. But the “why” doesn’t matter, only the “how”. If you attempted to spend time reasoning out “why” God did certain things, you’d drive yourself insane in the pointless endeavor. Accept of course, when He tells us the “why”.”

    Ok, then how did God do it? The scientific evidence screams that they are both evolved from a common ancestor.

    “Let’s take each. Genetics: again, just more similarity.
    Comparative anatomy: same thing as studying the similarity of the fossils.
    Geographical distribution: God put them there.”

    It doesn’t strike you odd that humans and chimpanzees have so many similarities and only differ in 1-2% of their genome, yet humans and elephants have many more differences? That doesn’t make you think, “Hmm, why is that the case?”

    Comparative anatomy doesn’t just deal with fossils, but yes, of course it is utilized when studying them. Take the forelimbs of mammals.
    The forelimbs of humans, whales, dogs, and bats all are very similar in structure. They each have the same number of bones, arranged in very similar ways. Of course, they have different external features and different functions. However, the embryological development and anatomical similarities in form are pretty striking. Scientists say that they share a common evolutionary ancestor and are relatively closely related.

    God put them there–how do you know this to be the case? Even if true, why would God place monotremes ONLY in Australia and not in South America or Africa?

    “But dont’ you see, you are starting with the assumption that evolution is true. I’m not sure what you mean by “different fields” but I promise you they are all tied together with the same basic assumptions.”

    If you don’t even know what I’m referring to, then how can you promise they are all tied together with the same assumptions? No offense intended, but that statement is completely bizarre to me.

    “You are assuming that God putting fossils there “seems” like evolution, when it actually, equally, could seem like He created them as is.”

    “Finding two different species in the strata of the geologic column is just that, finding two different species. You must assume that they changed over time.”

    I agree, to an extent. As I attempted to state earlier, either evolution is true, or God specially put fossils where they are and distributed organisms where they are geographically…or some alternate explanation we have not covered yet. If God did create organisms specially each time, after their own “kinds”, rather than them evolving from common ancestors, then why does the fossil record and other areas of science seem to definitely validate the theory of evolution?

    Why have areas of science that didn’t even exist in Darwin’s day–biochemistry and genetics, for example–confirmed his ideas?

    That seems to say to me that either evolution is true (whether there is a God or not) OR God is not very good at creating for Him to have to continue doing it over and over again.

    I prefer to think that God is pretty darn good at everything.

    “No one said anything about “speciation”, only kinds. Breeding a different type of fruit fly does not evolution make. It’s still a fruit fly. But evolution requires a change in kinds and that has NEVER been observed.”

    1. Your definition of evolution is faulty.
    2. A change in kinds seems to fall under the realm of “speciation” to me and that HAS been observed.

  12. intelligentscience Says:

    Vitaminbook

    I said: My point is that, in order to get the date of a rock at all, the assumptions must be followed EXACTLY. Those assumptions are NOT taken into account during the %error as you are suggesting.

    You said: Could you provide some evidence for that?

    Sure, my evidence is my reason. Let me put it into terms of the very basic math that geologists must do to find the age of a rock.
    X (amount of starting parent isotope)
    Y (Rate of decay)
    Z (amount of daughter isotope present)

    X(Y) = Z
    Sounds about correct? (very basically of course)
    1. So Y cannot be known for sure. We have no way of knowing wether or not any pressure, temperature or chemical factors have altered the rate of decay in the unobservable past. We can only know what Y is at this moment, which doesn’t do us any good for finding out the age of the rock.
    Btw, there IS evidence, discovered/done by RATE, that shows that rates of decay can change. I can provide links if you so desire.
    2. X can also not be known in any sense of the word. The many volcanoes that have erupted, forming new rocks, THOSE rocks starting parent isotope levels can be known, but not rocks formed “hundreds of millions of years ago.”
    3. X(Y)=Z is not completely accurate because there could be some starting initial Z on the other side of the = sign denoted by Zo. So a more correct equation would look like X(Y)+Zo = Z. Zo cannot be known, it must be assumed there is none.

    Z is the only value in that equation that can be known. So does the equation X(Y)+Zo = 2 seem like a solvable equation? Of course not. But that’s the equation that geologists are trying to solve, and they must make several assumptions to solve it.

    I said: “Geographical distribution: God put them there.”

    You said: “Could you provide evidence that this statement is true?”

    The onus of evidence is not on me in this case. We are both looking at the fact that there is a geologic distribution of species. I am making a “God put them there” statement and you are making a “evolution put them there” statement. My assertion isn’t that “God put them there” is right persay, my assertion is that both statements are equal in validity (and both are religious statements with me worshipping God as the “Doer of unknown things” and you worshipping evolution as the same). The only difference is that you claim your statement to be scientific. By doing so, you must prove that it is.

  13. intelligentscience Says:

    Airtightnoodle

    “I’ve already mentioned several. Recall in the original post:
    “For example: relative dating, radioactive dating, incremental dating such as using tree rings and ice cores, etc.”

    We’ve already established radiometric as being based upon assumptions so let me tackle the other two. I’ll use tree rings for the sake of simplicity but the same applies to ice cores.

    Tree rings: You are interpreting the evidence of tree rings with a starting assumption. Your starting assumption is this; All things I am looking at got here by small successive changes. Based on this assumption, tree rings are evidence for small successive changes. But don’t you see how circular that is? “Everything came about by small successive changes so the rings on a tree must be evidence of small successive changes”.

    Now let’s start with another assumption; God created everything 6k years ago. Now I look at how many rings the tree has and, using my starting assumption, conclude, “God created this tree as a full grown tree of unknown size, let’s discover how much the tree has grown since it’s creation”

    Don’t you see how our starting assumptions bring us to opposite conclusion?

    “Ok, then how did God do it? The scientific evidence screams that they are both evolved from a common ancestor.”

    God is all-powerful, that’s how He did it. The scientific evidence says that they are similar, nothing more. Your CONCLUSION is that similarity = common ancestry, not the evidence.

    “It doesn’t strike you odd that humans and chimpanzees have so many similarities and only differ in 1-2% of their genome, yet humans and elephants have many more differences? That doesn’t make you think, “Hmm, why is that the case?” ”

    I know you might think you have a point here, but you don’t. Think about it from my goggles for a second. If God created the universe, and some animals more similar than others, wouldn’t these animals’ DNA also be more similar than others?

    “The forelimbs of humans, whales, dogs, and bats all are very similar in structure.”

    You are continuing to hang on to similarity as evidence for common ancestry when it’s really only evidence for similarity.

    “God put them there–how do you know this to be the case? Even if true, why would God place monotremes ONLY in Australia and not in South America or Africa?”

    The onus of evidence is not on me, I am not claiming that God is a scientific theory I must prove. Only you are claiming that common ancestry is proven, a claim you cannot show.

    “Why” is a red herring. You are demanding a “why” of God without demanding one of evolution. Convenient.

    “If God did create organisms specially each time, after their own “kinds”, rather than them evolving from common ancestors, then why does the fossil record and other areas of science seem to definitely validate the theory of evolution?”

    But don’t you see, the fossil record does NOT “definetly validate” the theory of evolution. The fossil record is ONLY evidence of similarity, that’s it. But if you’d like to defend your HUGE statement of “definetly validate” I’d like to hear it. Please don’t use similarity though.

    “Why have areas of science that didn’t even exist in Darwin’s day–biochemistry and genetics, for example–confirmed his ideas?”

    Would you please defend this…

    “1. Your definition of evolution is faulty.
    2. A change in kinds seems to fall under the realm of “speciation” to me and that HAS been observed.”

    Show me how my definition of evolution is faulty and show me how a change in “kinds” has been observed. Like reptile to bird or land mammal to ocean mammal.

  14. vitaminbook Says:

    The onus of evidence is not on me in this case. We are both looking at the fact that there is a geologic distribution of species. I am making a “God put them there” statement and you are making a “evolution put them there” statement. My assertion isn’t that “God put them there” is right persay, my assertion is that both statements are equal in validity (and both are religious statements with me worshipping God as the “Doer of unknown things” and you worshipping evolution as the same). The only difference is that you claim your statement to be scientific. By doing so, you must prove that it is.

    I’m sorry, but that’s BS of the highest order. If your statement isn’t scientific, it can be safely ignored in a scientific discussion. What you’ve said here is that you have no evidence and no opinion that anybody should care about. From now on when you say ‘God did it’, I’ll switch it out for ‘I have no idea and am not interested in finding out’. Sound fair to you?

    1. So Y cannot be known for sure. We have no way of knowing wether or not any pressure, temperature or chemical factors have altered the rate of decay in the unobservable past. We can only know what Y is at this moment, which doesn’t do us any good for finding out the age of the rock.
    Btw, there IS evidence, discovered/done by RATE, that shows that rates of decay can change. I can provide links if you so desire.
    2. X can also not be known in any sense of the word. The many volcanoes that have erupted, forming new rocks, THOSE rocks starting parent isotope levels can be known, but not rocks formed “hundreds of millions of years ago.”
    3. X(Y)=Z is not completely accurate because there could be some starting initial Z on the other side of the = sign denoted by Zo. So a more correct equation would look like X(Y)+Zo = Z. Zo cannot be known, it must be assumed there is none.

    You’re not telling me anything I didn’t already know here. When scientists date anything, they’ll generally give you a range of ‘about 250 million years ago’ or ‘between 250 million years and 200 million years ago’. Does that sound like a precise date to you?

    Scientists are well aware of how their dating methods can be off, which is why nobody ever pretends to be able to get exact measures. You’re trying to make the jump from ‘we can’t narrow it down to within a few years’ to ‘we have no idea whatsoever how old anything is’.

    That’s going way too far. If our dating methods were that faulty, we’d be getting ages that were just all over the place – 100 million years old in one case, 10 million years old in another, and, hell, why not 10,000 years over here? It’s all pretty much a guess, right?

    You’re also ignoring several key issues here, most notably that scientists are aware of the problems you’ve mentioned and have developed methods to compensate for them. There are ways to check, with reasonable certainty, whether a sample has been contaminated or whether there are other factors that could throw off a measurement.

    For example, scientists don’t just assume that there was no daughter isotope present when the sample being tested was formed – they can tell by the results, with reasonable certainty, whether there was any present.

    On top of that there’s the fact that independent tests done on samples from across the world all back each other up. There isn’t just a single dating method used on a single type of specimen – instead there are many dating methods used on thousands of specimens.

    Basically, you’ve pointed out issues and potential problems with dating methods as if scientists have no awareness of them or are ignoring them, neither of which is true – they’ve known about them for decades and spend a considerable amount of time and effort trying to compensate for them.

    I know your opinion on this probably won’t be ‘scientific’, and thus will be no different to a wild guess, but what age do you think all of this rock is? What evidence do you have that practically all of modern science is completely wrong? (Sorry, I mentioned the word ‘evidence’ again. I keep forgetting you’re exempt!).

    I know you might think you have a point here, but you don’t. Think about it from my goggles for a second. If God created the universe, and some animals more similar than others, wouldn’t these animals’ DNA also be more similar than others?

    Oh no, the ‘goggles’. You’re a fan of Answers in Genesis, aren’t you?

    Of course, you can’t give us any evidence for this. At all. (Go on, prove me wrong!). So we can ignore it – no evidence, no value.

    God is all-powerful, that’s how He did it. The scientific evidence says that they are similar, nothing more. Your CONCLUSION is that similarity = common ancestry, not the evidence.

    God is all-powerful? God did it? Evidence?

    But don’t you see, the fossil record does NOT “definetly validate” the theory of evolution. The fossil record is ONLY evidence of similarity, that’s it. But if you’d like to defend your HUGE statement of “definetly validate” I’d like to hear it. Please don’t use similarity though.

    The scientific explanation for similarity is evolution. (Well, not quite, but you don’t know anything about science anyway…) Yours explnation is nothing. Nothing at all. Honestly, can you give us a single reason to take your argument seriously? Not only do you have no evidence, but you’ve actually stated that you don’t think you need evidence and that you’re not going to give us any – and yet, you think this is good enough to overturn the entirety of modern scientific thought.

  15. “Tree rings: You are interpreting the evidence of tree rings with a starting assumption. Your starting assumption is this; All things I am looking at got here by small successive changes. Based on this assumption, tree rings are evidence for small successive changes. But don’t you see how circular that is? “Everything came about by small successive changes so the rings on a tree must be evidence of small successive changes”.

    Now let’s start with another assumption; God created everything 6k years ago. Now I look at how many rings the tree has and, using my starting assumption, conclude, “God created this tree as a full grown tree of unknown size, let’s discover how much the tree has grown since it’s creation”

    Don’t you see how our starting assumptions bring us to opposite conclusion?”

    Even with starting from NO assumption, independent dating methods do give similar ages of objects.

    Of course we are speaking of similarity. This similarity between organisms is what spurred the investigation of scientists that came up with theories of evolution. Evolution, from a scientific viewpoint, is what explains this similarity. You can’t speak of it without speaking of similarity.

    However, I do understand your point. There are certainly two ways of looking at it.

    The evolutionists looks at the similarities of internal organs, their functions, etc, and sees common ancestry. Evidence from proteins and genes seems to confirm this.

    The creationist says well of course you would find similarities if the designer chose to design species to function similarly.

    If one chooses to ignore the scientific evidence and the usefulness of the theory of evolution in our modern times, then that is, of course, their choice.

    However, one interesting issue is raised by this. “Errors” in modern species can be used as evidence as “copying” from common ancestors.

    I’m short on time today, so look into pseudogenes and retroposons to see what I mean.

    “Show me how my definition of evolution is faulty and show me how a change in “kinds” has been observed. Like reptile to bird or land mammal to ocean mammal.”

    You said: “No one said anything about “speciation”, only kinds. Breeding a different type of fruit fly does not evolution make. It’s still a fruit fly. But evolution requires a change in kinds and that has NEVER been observed.”

    It’s more an issue with “kinds”. Let’s go back to the idea of “kinds”. The twelve-spotted ladybug could be placed in the twelve-spotted ladybug kind, the ladybug kind, the beetle kind, the insect kind, or lots of other kinds. No matter where you draw the line for “kinds”, there will be many organisms on the cusp of that line. Actually…that seems to match what evolution predicts quite nicely…but not creationism.

    There are several intermediates in the fossil record between theropods and birds.

    Sinosauropteryx prima, oviraptorosaur, Deinonychosaurs…these are just a few.

    From land mammal to whale:

    Pakicetus inachus, Ambulocetus natans, Indocetus ramani, Dorudon, Basilosaurus…

    You said breeding a different type of fruit fly isn’t evidence of evolution. What if that fruit fly cannot mate with other types of fruit flies? Are they still the same “kind”?

    If a million years go by and small changes continue to occur in that “new” fruit fly, will it still be a fruit fly?

  16. intelligentscience Says:

    Vitaminbook

    “I’m sorry, but that’s BS of the highest order. If your statement isn’t scientific, it can be safely ignored in a scientific discussion.”

    Claiming BS but offering no counterargument only makes it look like you have no answer to what I said. My entire point is that my statement ISN’T scientific and neither is yours. Thank you for proving my point. If you had evidence that “evolution put them there” you would have presented it, but all you did was insult.

    “For example, scientists don’t just assume that there was no daughter isotope present when the sample being tested was formed – they can tell by the results, with reasonable certainty, whether there was any present.”

    Really? How do they determine this?

    “On top of that there’s the fact that independent tests done on samples from across the world all back each other up. There isn’t just a single dating method used on a single type of specimen – instead there are many dating methods used on thousands of specimens.”

    All of them based on the same assumptions I already gave you.

    “Basically, you’ve pointed out issues and potential problems with dating methods as if scientists have no awareness of them or are ignoring them, neither of which is true – they’ve known about them for decades and spend a considerable amount of time and effort trying to compensate for them.”

    The word isn’t “problems” or “issues”, the word is “assumptions.” THAT is how they are compensating for them, by ASSUMING 1 2 and 3. If you aren’t going to be intellectually honest with yourself and see how those 3 assumptions make radiometric dating pointless and hold dogmatically to your “old earth” belief, that’s fine, I can’t stop you. If you’re ok with basing scientific theory on unscientific (unobservable, untestable and unfalsifiable) assumptions, have fun.

    “Of course, you can’t give us any evidence for this. At all. (Go on, prove me wrong!). So we can ignore it – no evidence, no value.”

    I have the same evidence that you do…similarity. I just have a different explanation for the similarity. Do you have any reason that your explanation is more valid then mine?

    “God is all-powerful? God did it? Evidence?”

    See, now you’re just shouting, ignoring the fact that you also have no evidence that I don’t also have.

    “The scientific explanation for similarity is evolution. (Well, not quite, but you don’t know anything about science anyway…”

    Thank you for agreeing with me. The only evidence you have for common ancestry is similarity.

    “Nothing at all. Honestly, can you give us a single reason to take your argument seriously? Not only do you have no evidence, but you’ve actually stated that you don’t think you need evidence and that you’re not going to give us any – and yet, you think this is good enough to overturn the entirety of modern scientific thought.”

    This is quite telling vitamin, we were having a cordial conversation until I made parallel statements to the ones you are making. I like how you are attacking my statement of “God put them there” while ignoring your “evolution put them there” statement. Both are unscientific in nature with both having only similarity for evidence. Another thing you ignored is that I’m not claiming my statement is scientific, only you are doing so. And then you make a huge red herring with the “entirety of modern scientific thought”. C’mon man, don’t be so disingenuous, we’re talking about two theories here.

    I asked you to defend your statement that evolution has been “definetly validated” by the fossil record and in turn you insult my intelligence and make unsupported conjecture, demanding evidence of my statement but requiring none for yours. Convenient.

  17. vitaminbook Says:

    You’re damn right I insulted your intelligence, and with good reason. You’re attempting to pass off religious belief as science, and you’ve got the gall to pretend that something you know nothing about is equally as valid as Creationism?

    If you want to read Answers in Genesis and pretend that Ken Ham knows what he’s talking about, be my guest. But please, don’t pretend that this is a scientific debate, because it’s not. No amount of evidence is going to change your religious beliefs, and I can say that confidently because every single one of your posts has demonstrated fundamental ignorance about practically every facet of science. If you were actually interested in learning about science or attempting to debunk it, you would not be making these elementary mistakes. Case in point:

    And then you make a huge red herring with the “entirety of modern scientific thought”. C’mon man, don’t be so disingenuous, we’re talking about two theories here.

    Yes, the entirety of modern science. Evolution doesn’t exist in a vacuum; it’s a theory with a huge number of implications and uses in everything from biology to medicine to geology. What you’d call the ‘old Earth’ theory is based on evidence drawn from a huge variety of different fields. Are you willing to completely disregard every notion we have of plate tectonics, climatology and cosmology? If the Earth and the Universe are younger than we think by a factor of thousands, all of those go out the window, along with a good chunk of what we know about the fundamental properties of matter. You’re claiming that a very large portion of modern physics and chemistry is completely, wildly wrong.

    The fact that you don’t even realize the implications of your argument – that, if correct, it would throw all of science into complete disarray – just proves that you haven’t done the first iota of real research on the topic. You’re trying to replace everything I just listed above with, essentially, magic – ‘God did it’.

    Now, I’m well aware of none of this is going to get through to you, but I would hope that anyone else reading this – people who aren’t already addled by Creationist indoctrination – can see how completely ridiculous this kind of thinking is and how facetious is the claim that those who support evolution don’t have the evidence on our side. There’s a very good reason why Creationists steadfastly refuse to advance any evidence for their own ideas – they don’t have any.

  18. intelligentscience Says:

    Airtightnoodle

    “Even with starting from NO assumption, independent dating methods do give similar ages of objects.”

    Not true. I’ll try to explain it more clearly. If I count the rings of the tree all the way to the core, and then take that to be the actual age of the tree, I’m inherently assuming the tree grew from a seed, and WAS NOT created full grown 6k years ago (and has grown from there).

    “If one chooses to ignore the scientific evidence and the usefulness of the theory of evolution in our modern times, then that is, of course, their choice.”

    For the record, I am not ignoring the usefulness of modern science. The conclusion that life adapts has been exteremely useful to us (adaptation of bacteria to name one). I would assert that the origins explanation of evolution has nothing to do with the current testable and observable science we use today. However, assuming that we would not have been able to do this science without evolution is unfounded.

    Psuedogenes, I’ve already done some looking into them and, from what I’ve gathered so far, even evolutionary biologists are very divided on wether they are psuedogenes at all and even if they are what that really means. The study is in it’s infancy.

    “The twelve-spotted ladybug could be placed in the twelve-spotted ladybug kind, the ladybug kind, the beetle kind, the insect kind, or lots of other kinds. No matter where you draw the line for “kinds”, there will be many organisms on the cusp of that line. Actually…that seems to match what evolution predicts quite nicely…but not creationism.”

    Ok now you are equivocating the definition of “kinds”. All insects are not beetles but all beetles are beetles. I didn’t ask “are there an organisms that are close to other kinds?”, that is not at all suprising to the Creationist. There would be no reason to conclude that God didn’t create all kinds of animals, even with some kinds similar to other kinds. “Many organisms on the cusp of that line”, is not “observable changing in kinds” MORE than it is “God created them on the cusp of that line”.

    Honestly, don’t attempt to show observable changes in kinds, we all know it’s never been observed. Even evolutionary theory itself says that a change in kinds COULDN’T be observed by humans because it takes millions of years. Convenient cop out don’t you think?

    The rest of the post is basically naming off similar fossils that have been concluded to be evidence of common ancestry (nothing observable in other words), but if you’d like me to show you how much of a leap evolutionists must take with the whale evolution I’d be happy to.

    “You said breeding a different type of fruit fly isn’t evidence of evolution. What if that fruit fly cannot mate with other types of fruit flies? Are they still the same “kind”?”

    Yes. Breeding a different type of fruit fly is evidence for an observable change in alleles. That is not under dispute. What is under dispute is wether or not a change in alleles would lead to a change in kinds over millions of years. It’s never been observed and similarity in the fossil record doesn’t help the theory any.

  19. Intelligentscience–

    Your posts leave me wondering what exactly you think science is. You say that all the evidence that points to evolution could just as well be used to point to a creator.

    Do you always pick and choose which scientific theories to accept? Perhaps Atlas really is holding up the earth on his shoulders after all. Why not?

    I see that you haven’t addressed some of my earlier points, such as the following:

    “If God created in such a manner, that would seem to imply that God couldn’t get it right the first time. “Hmm, that blowhole really doesn’t work very well there…let’s try something a little different now.”

    Even if God felt it worked perfectly well where it was before, why did He keep creating? Why does the earth appear to show these creations over billions of years? It all seems a little deceptive for a God who hates lies.

    Also, consider the eye–a feature some people consider to be “irreducibly complex” and therefore could not have evolved. Yet the eye has defects that surely no intelligent designer would ever include–like light receptors in the back of the eye behind blood vessels that obstruct the view.

    It seems a little silly and insulting, in my opinion, to attribute such work to God, who is supposed to be perfect and omnipotent.”

    “That seems to say to me that either evolution is true (whether there is a God or not) OR God is not very good at creating for Him to have to continue doing it over and over again.

    I prefer to think that God is pretty darn good at everything.”

    Curious to know if you have any thoughts.

  20. intelligentscience Says:

    Vitaminbook

    “You’re damn right I insulted your intelligence, and with good reason. You’re attempting to pass off religious belief as science, and you’ve got the gall to pretend that something you know nothing about is equally as valid as Creationism?”

    It’s sad to see someone lower themselves to insult and ad hominem instead of actually responding to arguments. The funny thing is, you are actually doing yourself a disservice.

    “If you want to read Answers in Genesis and pretend that Ken Ham knows what he’s talking about, be my guest. But please, don’t pretend that this is a scientific debate, because it’s not.”

    This is the second time you’ve mentioned AiG, attempting to turn this into an ad hominem argument. Question: Are you saying that the dozens of Ph.D’s that contribute to AiG don’t know anything about science? And if so, why?

    “No amount of evidence is going to change your religious beliefs, and I can say that confidently because every single one of your posts has demonstrated fundamental ignorance about practically every facet of science.”

    Actually, my religious beliefs are based on evidence. But you won’t believe me. You have not shown an ignorance in ANY of my posts, I’m all ears if you’d to defend yourself.

    Btw, your statement that “evolution accounts for similarity” is as religious in nature as “God accounts for similarity”, you can call me stupid all you want and ignore it all you want, but it’s the exact same statement.

    “Are you willing to completely disregard every notion we have of plate tectonics, climatology and cosmology?”

    Are you telling me that those studies REQUIRE an old Earth to work? Be specific now.

    “The fact that you don’t even realize the implications of your argument – that, if correct, it would throw all of science into complete disarray – just proves that you haven’t done the first iota of real research on the topic.”

    Are you saying that we should keep the theory around, not because it’s valid, but because it would change too much if we did? Btw, please defend your assertion that ALL of science REQUIRES an old Earth. Please, I want to hear it.

    “You’re trying to replace everything I just listed above with, essentially, magic – ‘God did it’.”

    Your magic, “evolution did it” is no less potent.

    “Now, I’m well aware of none of this is going to get through to you, but I would hope that anyone else reading this – people who aren’t already addled by Creationist indoctrination – can see how completely ridiculous this kind of thinking is and how facetious is the claim that those who support evolution don’t have the evidence on our side.”

    All I’ve been doing is asking you to defend common ancestry with something more than “similarity”. Instead of doing so you berate me and become belligerent. Who’s being more rational?

    ” There’s a very good reason why Creationists steadfastly refuse to advance any evidence for their own ideas – they don’t have any.”

    Are you suggesting that Creationists who believe in a young Earth can’t do real science?

  21. intelligentscience Says:

    Airtightnoodle

    Firstly, I’d like to thank you for being honest and cordial eventhough we disagree.

    “Do you always pick and choose which scientific theories to accept? Perhaps Atlas really is holding up the earth on his shoulders after all. Why not?”

    I’m not picking and choosing at all. I’m against two scientific theories, common ancestry and “old Earth”, that’s it. Atlas would have to run pretty fast while holding the Earth on his shoulders.

    “Even if God felt it worked perfectly well where it was before, why did He keep creating? Why does the earth appear to show these creations over billions of years? It all seems a little deceptive for a God who hates lies.”

    I would ask what evidence you think points to these “little creations” and what brought you to that conclusion. I couldn’t respond without asking that first.

  22. intelligentscience Says:

    Sorry for the double post, I was outside the chat box when I hit ‘enter’

    ” Yet the eye has defects that surely no intelligent designer would ever include–like light receptors in the back of the eye behind blood vessels that obstruct the view.

    It seems a little silly and insulting, in my opinion, to attribute such work to God, who is supposed to be perfect and omnipotent.”

    You are attempting to discredit God on something you think He SHOULD have done. That’s a scary place to be, criticizing the Creator for percieved flaws in His Creation. Just because God is perfect and omnipotent doesn’t mean that his Creation has stayed that way. In fact the Bible says that the Earth is “groaning” because of man’s sin. How far this corruption of nature has spread, I don’t know and I won’t speculate, but what is for sure is that what we see now, isn’t EXACTLY how God would want it.

    But the same question can be applied to Natural Selection. Why would Natural Selection select for a feature in the eye that causes a blindspot, that’s detrimental to the ‘fitness’ of the organism?

    But I want to ask a deeper question: Why are you requiring a “why” answer from God but not needing one from evolution?

  23. “Firstly, I’d like to thank you for being honest and cordial eventhough we disagree.”

    You’re welcome.

    “I’m not picking and choosing at all. I’m against two scientific theories, common ancestry and “old Earth”, that’s it. Atlas would have to run pretty fast while holding the Earth on his shoulders.”

    So basically you are against evolution because you think that all of the evidence for the similarity found in organisms today (including genetically, biochemically, and physiologically), their geographical distribution, etc, cannot be accounted for by the theory?

    Instead you choose to believe that all these things are simply explained by “God made it so”.

    This is not a scientific statement and can’t be tested by science. Again, I’m left wondering what you think science really is.

    “I would ask what evidence you think points to these “little creations” and what brought you to that conclusion. I couldn’t respond without asking that first.”

    We agree that fossils exist, correct? We agree that fossils show us variations of all sorts of organisms, yes? Even if you make the argument that these variations are all still within the same “kind” of organism (again, what is a kind? Does a ladybug belong to the ladybug kind, the insect kind, the beetle kind, or what?), you’re going to have some problems reconciling these fossils with the creationist perspective. According to the fossil record, there have been lots of deaths of “kinds”–whatever a “kind” is–before man appears in the fossil record.

    Again, as I stated earlier, in my opinion the movement of the blowhole of whales seems to imply that if they were designed by a Creator, he couldn’t get it right the first time.

    “You are attempting to discredit God on something you think He SHOULD have done. That’s a scary place to be, criticizing the Creator for percieved flaws in His Creation. Just because God is perfect and omnipotent doesn’t mean that his Creation has stayed that way. In fact the Bible says that the Earth is “groaning” because of man’s sin.”

    So you’re saying that things started changing and became imperfect as a result of man’s sin. Again, then why is there variation of “kinds” shown in the fossil record BEFORE the appearance of man?

    “I don’t know and I won’t speculate, but what is for sure is that what we see now, isn’t EXACTLY how God would want it.”

    I can agree with that.

    “But the same question can be applied to Natural Selection. Why would Natural Selection select for a feature in the eye that causes a blindspot, that’s detrimental to the ‘fitness’ of the organism?”

    Evolution doesn’t have some goal of “perfection”. Having an eye, or photosensitive cells, etc, can make an organism more fit than not having them, even if they are suboptimal. Evolution does indeed predict that many sophisticated parts of organisms have evolved from previous structures that had a different function or worked differently, resulting in clumsy structures or maladaptive traits. One such example would indeed be the mammalian blind spot.

    Cephalopods, on the other hand, have no blind spot…maybe they’re on the verge of taking over the planet…hmm… 😉

  24. Airtightnoodle

    “So basically you are against evolution because you think that all of the evidence for the similarity found in organisms today (including genetically, biochemically, and physiologically), their geographical distribution, etc, cannot be accounted for by the theory?”

    No, I think they CAN be accounted for by the theory, absolutely. However, it’s not the ONLY way they can be accounted for and evolutionists want to make it the only way.

    “Instead you choose to believe that all these things are simply explained by “God made it so”.”

    Not entirely. A lot of life has changed in 6k years I’m sure. But “kinds” changing, it’s never been observed and there is no evidence for it.

    “This is not a scientific statement and can’t be tested by science. Again, I’m left wondering what you think science really is.”

    I’m REALLY glad you said this. This is another one of my MAJOR points. You say “God made it so” is not a scientific statement, and you are absolutely correct. But what you don’t realize is that “evolution made it so” is JUST AS unscientific. Why? Because we can’t observe kinds changing into other kinds (as much as you would like to think so it has just never happened), we can’t test kinds forming into other kinds (any expirements forcing a reptile to become a bird?), and we can’t falsify the claim that it happened (because we don’t have a time machine).

    So the main assertion of evolution, common ancestry, is untestable, unobservable and unfalsifiable. The fact that it is still called science offends my intellect and my reason.

    For the record: I’m not saying adaptation doesn’t happen. Bacterial absolutely changes to become more resistant to other things. Birds beaks can absolutely adapt based on their food source. All the procedural science that we can observe, test and falsify is indisputeably valid. However, the historical science, the theories attempting to explain the origins of things, are what we are talking about here.

    “We agree that fossils exist, correct? We agree that fossils show us variations of all sorts of organisms, yes? Even if you make the argument that these variations are all still within the same “kind” of organism…”

    So it’s not that there are “little creations” it’s that God obviously created life with the ability to adapt. Causing variation within kinds, (the extremely variable example of dog species is a good example) and all the stuff we can observe around us and experiment on with our modern science. No Creationist would deny that this happends.

    “Again, as I stated earlier, in my opinion the movement of the blowhole of whales seems to imply that if they were designed by a Creator, he couldn’t get it right the first time.”

    Again you are judging God based on where YOU think the blowhole should have been. I’m not that familiar with blowhole adaptation, however, either way, it’s not evidence for molecules-to-man evolution in any way.

    “Again, then why is there variation of “kinds” shown in the fossil record BEFORE the appearance of man?”

    See, again your assuming that God didn’t create man right after He created the animals like He said He did in Genesis. Why?

    “Evolution doesn’t have some goal of “perfection”. ”

    But you would require this of God’s Creation?

    Also, let me be sarcastic for a second here and then I’ll get over it…

    Yea, the blind spot in the eyes caused by a blood vessel keeping the organs alive is a REAL hinderance. I mean, I can’t see HALF the stuff I should because of the dumb blind spot…stupid creator, making eyes that have such a noticeable everyday nuisance blind spot that affects my life so greatly…idiot creator.

    Ok I’m done.

  25. “No, I think they CAN be accounted for by the theory, absolutely. However, it’s not the ONLY way they can be accounted for and evolutionists want to make it the only way. ”

    Sure, there are other theories–creationism, intelligent design, aliens came from a distant planet and genetically engineered us to mine the earth for them (yeah, that’s actually in a book by Zecharia Sitchin), etc.

    Evolutionists, for the moment, think it’s the only way because it is currently the only SCIENTIFIC theory to explain the diversity of life.

    “Not entirely. A lot of life has changed in 6k years I’m sure. But “kinds” changing, it’s never been observed and there is no evidence for it.”

    No, there is lots of evidence for it. You just choose to close your eyes to it and say, “They’re similar. So what? God did that. Why? We don’t know and don’t care.”

    Do you not see the problem with the word “kinds”? As stated before, a ladybug could fall into several different “kind” categories. Where would you put it? Does it belong to the ladybug kind, the beetle kind, the insect kind, etc? Let’s say a population of ladybugs undergoes small changes for millions of years and at that time do not really resemble the ladybugs we know today. Are they still in the ladybug kind? Or do we manipulate our meaning of the word “kinds” and say, “Well, they aren’t ladybugs anymore, but they are still beetles…so see, no evolution there!”

    “I’m REALLY glad you said this. This is another one of my MAJOR points. You say “God made it so” is not a scientific statement, and you are absolutely correct. But what you don’t realize is that “evolution made it so” is JUST AS unscientific. Why? Because we can’t observe kinds changing into other kinds (as much as you would like to think so it has just never happened), we can’t test kinds forming into other kinds (any expirements forcing a reptile to become a bird?), and we can’t falsify the claim that it happened (because we don’t have a time machine).”

    I feel that you are simply closing your eyes to the mountains of evidence that support evolutionary theory. Speciation has, in fact, been observed, and not just in the fossil record, which you seem to dismiss quite readily. It is quite well-documented, and I would highly suggest you go out and do some research on it. Evolution IS science, whether you want to believe so or not. It can be falsified; it’s based on controlled, repeatable experiments; it’s consistent; it’s useful; etc.

    “Again you are judging God based on where YOU think the blowhole should have been. I’m not that familiar with blowhole adaptation, however, either way, it’s not evidence for molecules-to-man evolution in any way.”

    I’m not saying it should be in one place versus another. I’m saying it has obviously moved. If God did so, why? Just for his whimsy? You can chalk it up to, “Who can know the mind of God” or “His ways are not our ways” or “He has a purpose for everything”, and that’s fine if you personally want to believe that way and leave it at that, but those statements are not scientific and can’t be tested.

    “See, again your assuming that God didn’t create man right after He created the animals like He said He did in Genesis. Why?”

    If you read Genesis literally, wouldn’t you have to assume there was no death before the fall of man? If so, then why does the fossil record show all these different “kinds” before the appearance of man? What happened to them?

    “But you would require this of God’s Creation?”
    “Yea, the blind spot in the eyes caused by a blood vessel keeping the organs alive is a REAL hinderance. I mean, I can’t see HALF the stuff I should because of the dumb blind spot…stupid creator, making eyes that have such a noticeable everyday nuisance blind spot that affects my life so greatly…idiot creator.”

    Not at all. I’m just saying it seems rather strange for an “intelligent” designer.

    If you’re interested, I think you may find the following books interesting or at least helpful in understanding evolution from a differerent perspective–even if you continue to disagree with it.

    “Finding Darwin’s God” by Kenneth Miller
    “The Language of God” by Francis Collins
    “Evolution” by Douglas Futuyma
    “The Meaning of Creation” by Conrad Hyers (working my way through this one myself)

  26. Airtightnoodle

    You misunderstand my position on several points.

    “Evolutionists, for the moment, think it’s the only way because it is currently the only SCIENTIFIC theory to explain the diversity of life.”

    The definition of “evolution” varies greatly depending upon who you ask. But I’m trying to distinguish between two particular definitions.
    1. Evolution: a change in allele frequencies in a population over time
    2. Evolution: All life on earth originated from a few self-replicating molecules or DNA.

    Don’t you see how different those definitions are? Definition 1 is true without a doubt. Life adapts and has since the beginning of time, we can observe this easily (Darwin’s finches). Definition #2, another phrase for that definition is “molecules-to-man” evolution or “common ancestry”.

    Definition 1 is scientific while definition 2 is NOT. Why? Because we cannot test, observe or falsify definition #2 (molecules-to-man evolution or common ancestry, whichever you prefer).

    “No, there is lots of evidence for it. You just choose to close your eyes to it and say, “They’re similar. So what? God did that. Why? We don’t know and don’t care.””

    You have not shown that I am ignoring evidence. Not once have I done this. EVERY peice of evidence for common ancestry you’ve given me I’ve shown you how it can be evidence for creation as well. Similarity is NOT also evidence for creation? Show me where I’m wrong.

    “Where would you put it? Does it belong to the ladybug kind, the beetle kind, the insect kind, etc?”

    This is a pointless, time-wasting question because it’s a “what if” question. Science doesn’t deal in “what ifs”, it deals in observable, testable phenomena.

    “Let’s say a population of ladybugs undergoes small changes for millions of years and at that time do not really resemble the ladybugs we know today. Are they still in the ladybug kind?”

    But don’t you see how your example MUST include unobservable phenomena (millions of years)? This is why molecules-to-man evolution is, by the very definition of science, unscientific.

    I asked for examples of kinds changing into other kinds and you give me a “what if” situation. That’s not very strong.

    “I feel that you are simply closing your eyes to the mountains of evidence that support evolutionary theory.”

    You feel incorrectly. In fact, you must show this in order to use it in this discussion. Show please show me the “mountains of evidence” that CAN’T BE used as support for Creation. The way to do this would be to show me how life MUST HAVE evolved in slow successive steps.

    “Speciation has, in fact, been observed, and not just in the fossil record, which you seem to dismiss quite readily. It is quite well-documented, and I would highly suggest you go out and do some research on it.”

    I never said anything about speciation. Evolution requires changes much greater than just speciation.

    “Evolution IS science, whether you want to believe so or not. It can be falsified; it’s based on controlled, repeatable experiments; it’s consistent; it’s useful; etc.”

    The 1st definition of evolution for sure is science. The change in life that we see going on around us continually…absolutely is science. The second definition, molecules-to-man evolution/common ancestry, not even close.

    If you could show me how the 2nd definition can be supported with observation and/or controlled experiments and tell me HOW it can be falsified then you’d have a good argument.

    “saying it has obviously moved. If God did so, why?”

    Perhaps the blowhole has moved since creation. Perhaps it’s an entirely different species of whale. Either way, if you’re trying to provide evidence for common ancestry through this example, it’s not a good one.

    Show me how “evolution moved the blowhole” can be tested or observed or falsified.

    “If you read Genesis literally, wouldn’t you have to assume there was no death before the fall of man? If so, then why does the fossil record show all these different “kinds” before the appearance of man? What happened to them?”

    You are attributing theistic evolution to me. I take the Genesis account literally, as it was intended, meaning that man was created just a day after the animals. This argument doesn’t apply to me.

    “Not at all. I’m just saying it seems rather strange for an “intelligent” designer.”

    So creating us with two eyes so that the blind spot doesn’t effect us at all isn’t intelligent?

    I’ve laid out my case clearly in my blog (intelligentscience.org) why Theistic Evolution doesn’t work. Either you must say that evolution is false or that Jesus and Paul were wrong, a Christian can’t have it both ways. Read my post on my blog and if you disagree then we can discuss that as well.

  27. My, this page has gotten quite long! I’m rather proud that one of my humble posts has sparked so much discussion!

    The problem I’m seeing thus far with the discussion is that you are trying to make the case that both creationism and evolution are really belief systems. I can certainly agree that creationism is. Creationism isn’t falsifiable. I’m certain that any evidence related to origins can be explained with some creationist spin. However, that still doesn’t make it a scientific theory, but it does make for some interesting theological conversations.

    Science, according to most people, requires falsifiability–which you’ve touched on yourself previously. Though you deny parts of evolutionary theory can be falsified, you are mistaken. Evolution–all parts of it–make certain predictions about what will and will not be found, and has pretty much been right in all cases. For example, evolution predicted some sort of mechanism for heredity (we now know that lies in DNA), fossils that indicate common descent, and that similar and geographically close species are usually more recently related than less similar and less geographically close species.

    Also, I haven’t heard yet of a rabbit being found in the Precambrian, but who knows. We’ll keep looking. 🙂

    Evolution also explains why dogs don’t give birth to cats, cats don’t give birth to dogs, elephants don’t give birth to donkeys, and that new species don’t just appear out of nowhere.

    Science is based on looking at the objective evidence, building some sort of hypothesis to explain the evidence, and then testing it to see if it can be falsified. Once its tested repeatedly and found to be well-supported it gets to become (yay!) a theory. The history of evolutionary theory follows this guideline as well. Of course, intelligent design and creationism do not fit this criteria.

    Yes, you can continue to make the argument that “similarity doesn’t indicate relatedness”, and as scientists continue to investigate, that may even someday be found to be the case–but currently that looks very unlikely as all the evidence indicates otherwise. When one combines the evidence from morphology, fossils, genetics, etc, it becomes a lot more probable to agree with evolutionary theory than saying “aliens did it” or “God did it” or “monkeys flew out of my butt and did it” (the last of which would be my least favorite because, let’s face it, that would be rather painful).

    Creationism/intelligent design are not scientific and cannot be falsified. That’s why they fall under belief systems. You can continue to say that evolution, or at least parts of it, are not scientific, and if you want to continue to believe that, despite its falsehood, then go ahead. You would at least have to, hopefully, admit that even if you don’t believe it is entirely scientific, it sure has a lot more going for it scientifically than creationism or intelligent design, which have NO scientific backing.

    Ask yourself honestly (I’m not even asking for a reply because I’m pretty much winding down on this thread for the time being as I need to devote my time to other projects–yes, readers, teachers do not sit idly by during the summer; we actually DO work) why would a Creator supply so much evidence which seems to point toward common descent and not creationism? Why does light from distant galaxies appear to have traveled for billions of years? Perhaps we are interpreting the evidence incorrectly. This is always a possibility, of course. Yet I find it unlikely that several scientists, among several different fields of science, have come to such similar conclusions completely independently of one another. Perhaps the misinterpretation lies NOT on the side of science but on the side of RELIGION in reading the Genesis creation accounts.

    So, for the time being, that is my last word on the topic. I have enjoyed the back-and-forth and thank you for your courtesy. I would again highly recommend some of the books I mentioned earlier to further your own understanding and hey, even if they don’t “convert” you, at least you’ll have more ammo when debating people like me. 🙂

    Peace be with you!

  28. tomcadman Says:

    FYI… Some Articles on ‘Whale Evolution’ (which came up in the above discussion) showing logical and scientific reasons why current theories of land animal to whale evolution are deficient…

    http://www.trueorigin.org/ng_whales01.asp

    http://www.icr.org/article/433/

    For those who minds are still open.

    Peace.

  29. First off you can’t prove that that fossils had any kids let alone diffrent kids, you just know that they existed. I’ve got a question, which came first DNA or proteins needed by DNA- which can only be produced by DNA

  30. I’m not sure I can even respond to your fossil comment; I don’t know what you’re going for.

    Proteins aren’t “produced” by DNA. DNA is like a code; it has “information” for making proteins. The sequence of the nucleotide bases determines the sequence of amino acids in polypeptides, but DNA doesn’t physically produce protein. In any case, it is more likely that life was first based on RNA, which is able to store information (like DNA) and catalyze chemical reactions (like proteins known as enzymes). You can learn more about this by researching the RNA world hypothesis.

  31. Probably a bit late to this debate but I found it intriguing and although I feel science won out in the end I do respect and admire the tenacity of the creationist argument. For the first time I was able to get an insight into the depth of indoctrination required to sustain such a faith based reasoning. It is quite disturbing to read things from someone who seems quite well read, about a tree coming into existence as a fully grown specimen and then carrying on as if their ‘scientific’ reasoning is valid. I have learned a lot from discussing science with creationists and what always strikes me is the desperation driven by pure faith. I wish creationists would be happy to admit that they must live by blind faith, why not just accept that? They are free to do so, there is no need to use science to explain the inexplicable. Especially since the scientific method does not try to disprove God.
    Also you might notice that the above arguments made by the creationist gentlemen all attempt to find flaws in evolution etc. but none have attempted to, or were questioned on the evidence for the great biblical flood and the ark etc. If they are still watching this space I’d love to hear their scientific explanations which plausibly explain the story of Noah’s Ark. (including Noah’s age, Dinosaurs on the ark, where all the water came from, who it carved the Grand Canyon and how long that took, etc. etc.)
    If the story of Noah’s ark is untrue and therefore, remarkably untrue to the extent that it is pure nonsense, then wouldn’t it be prudent to judge the Genesis story with renewed scepticism?
    So, prove the Flood, ark, animal distribution etc. using only the scientific method and I’m sure there will be a case to take a new look at the genesis account and reconsider its scientific validity. Good luck.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

%d bloggers like this: